On Tuesday, May 10 residents of the Milford School District will be voting for the 5 Year At-Large seat on the Milford School Board from 10 am to 8 pm at three separate polling locations: Banneker Elementary, Lulu Ross Elementary and the Morris Early Childhood Center.
One of the seats for Milford School Board will be a contested race between candidates Patrick J. Emory, Mark A. Dissinger, Robert Reif and Deneen Smith. In a continued effort to keep the Milford community informed and engaged Milfordlive.com has interviewed each candidate with a list of questions regarding the upcoming election. The winner of this election will fill a 5 year term for “At-Large” in the Milford School District.
Robert Reif has lived in the Milford School District for close to six years. He has been married for almost 21 years with one child attending Milford Central Academy and one child attending Milford High School. Bob’s family moved here from California, although he is originally from New Jersey. In California, Bob spent over 25 years working in the area of sub atomic physics research at Stanford University, specifically at SLAC, the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center.
Bob states that his Stanford experience has “helped him to interacting with many personalities, working within budgets, keeping projects on schedule, and looking at the larger picture without losing sight of the details.”
He always enjoyed helping kids and working with parents and helping the community. In California, bob was involved with Cub Scouts and since moving to Delaware has been involved with Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. In all, he has been contributing to Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts for about seven year and was a Boy Scout while growing up. In addition, Bob founded Odyssey of the Mind , a school sponsored event, that has brought opportunities for students to learn outside of school.
1. What accomplishments are you proud of?
I am proud of raising two great children and of helping other peoples’ children. I am proud of having played a part in scientific discoveries that advance the knowledge of humankind. I am also proud of having learned to ride horses at the age of 50 and am loving it.
2. Why are you running for School Board?
I am passionate about education because of my scientific background and because my kids are still going to school. I want my kids to have the best. I want all the kids in the Milford School District to have the best. In conversations with parents and educators I know I am not alone. I have had a lot of contact with our schools and believe that no matter how good schools are there are always tweaks that can be found to make improvements. This will push us toward our goals. We can and must do a better job preparing our children and young adults for college.
3. What would you like to see done during your first term?
I would like to see communication improved throughout the district. This can be achieved two ways. First, I want educators, community members, and parents of students to be able to come to me and talk about issues that concern them. I will also actively reach out to the community to get feedback. I will attend Milford Education Association meetings, Milford Parent Association Council meetings, and I’ll visit classrooms. I am currently using a facebook page “Bob for Board” and website, https://sites.google.com/site/bobforboard/home I’ve established a website: “Bob on Board, MSD” to be used after I am elected to the Board, and I will use a facebook page, Bob on Board, for people to contact me after the election.
Second, I would like to see the school and District websites utilized more. I want to see parents, caregivers, and students going to the school and District websites to get information. They need information on homework, class assignments, school functions, teacher and counselor information, nurse’s information, and so much more. I believe this information should be readily, and easily, found.
Finally, I want our high school turned around and meeting AYP without restructuring. This issue should be one of the top priories of the Milford community and it is one of mine.
4. What are the current issues facing the Milford School District?
One issue is parental involvement. It is a known fact that when parents are involved in their child’s education the child will perform better in school. To help parents, I want to see child care provided at school functions such as parent-teacher meetings, board meetings, PTO/PTA and MPAC meetings. Any time a parent is involved in the educational system the child will benefit.
I want to see Parents empowered, so they can advocate on behalf of their children; to do this they must be able to attend school and District functions. I want parents involved in the education of their children.
On the school side we have a high school failing to meet AYP. If this is not turned around and improved we will see a restructuring of this school. This restructuring can happen in a number of ways, no matter which way is picked it will be a very difficult on our high school, our District, and our community. This is one reason communication needs to improve and parents need support to become more involved. We need everyone’s involvement to turn around the high school.
5. What does a vote for you stand for?
A vote for “Bob for Board” stands for a new look at things. I am retired and have the time and passion to work hard as a member of the Board. I will bring a fresh face and mind to the Board. I think for myself and look at facts before I make decisions. Our children are our future and they must be prepared. A vote for me stands for a commitment to make decisions that place education and students first.
Voting will take place on May 10, 2011 from 10 am to 8 pm at three separate polling locations: Banneker Elementary, Lulu Ross Elementary and the Morris Early Childhood Center. Absentee voting is available for those eligible voters who are unable to go to the polls on May 10, 2011. Call 739-4498 for information on obtaining an affidavit to enable this office to mail a ballot to you or vote absentee ballot in person at the Kent County Department of Elections Office, Monday-Friday 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P. M., now until May 9, 2011 12:00 Noon. There will be extended hours on May 7, 2011 – 8:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. Bring proof of identity and address. To the Department of Elections for Kent County located at 100 Enterprise Place, Suite 5, Dover, DE 19904. The office can be reached by calling 302-739-4498.